Peripheral Nerve Evaluation

Interstim Therapy Basic Evaluation- Peripheral Nerve Evaluation (PNE)

You have been diagnosed with one of the following conditions:

  • Leakage of urine with sudden urgency
  • Urinary Frequency
  • Difficulty emptying bladder or incomplete emptying
  • Accidental bowel leakage

After a consultation with our Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive specialist, Dr. Mary Burns, you have decided to proceed with further testing of Sacral Neuromodulation, prior to moving on to long-term therapy, to determine whether adequate symptom reduction can be achieved.

This test is called Interstim Therapy Basic Evaluation- Peripheral Nerve Evaluation (PNE).  The goal of ths test is to experience the effects of Sacral Neuromodulation. Based of the results, you and Dr Burns will decide if the therapy is right choice for you.

You must remember Interstim is NOT a cure. The goal is to achieve a 50% or greater reduction in symptoms.  If the test is successful- you will discuss with Dr Burns whether to proceedwith minimaly invasive procedures for neuromodulation.


On the day of testing:

You will be brought into the examination room and positioned comfortably on the examination table in the prone position. Your lower back will be exposed and prepped with antiseptic solution. 1 or 2 leads “flexible thin wires” will be placed under your skin in your lower back.  Local anesthetic will be used to minimize discomfort. This test typically takes 15-20 minutes to complete.

After the test:

You will leave the office with a dressing over the area where wire is inserted and a test stimulator will be attached to the wire. This test stimulator looks similar to a pager or small cellphone.  Over the next 2-3 days, you wil keep a log of your bladder and/or bowel habits and present back to my office to review in approximately 3 days. At that time the wire is easily removed by gently pulling it out. It is important to know during this time the lower back area CANNOT get wet. Therefore shower/baths are not allowed. Sponge baths are ok. During these few days, you still have the freedom to do most of your regular daily activites.

At the follow up visit- Dr Burns will discuss your success and review your logs and make a decision if proceeding with neuromodulation is appropriate for you.

Complications are rare but can occur with the evaluation. These include movement of the wire, technical problems with the device, and some temporary pain.

For more information reguarding neuromodulation of bladder control, please visit Medtronic’s Website for patients-